Here's how long you should live in your home before you sell it.
Whether you just moved in or have lived in your home for 50
years, it's common to wonder how long you should stay in your
home before you sell it. According to the National Association of
Realtors®, ten years is the average amount of time that a
homeowner will stay in their home before deciding to sell it.
Now, personally we find ourselves moving about every 5 years. And yep, we are starting to feel that moving itch again. :)
If you're under ten years and itching to sell, many experts say you
should follow the “five-year rule” and stay in the same home for at
least five years before selling.
This may sound like a long time and you may think you are readyto sell now, but before you make any rash decisions, we put together a few of the most important factors that you should be aware of.
1. Your Mortgage
One of the first and foremost factors you must consider when you
decide to sell your home is your mortgage payment. If you want tomake money when you sell your home, then your sale price must be greater than what’s left of your mortgage. When you first buy your home and begin to pay your mortgage, the first few years will go towards interest rather than the principal amount. This typically means that it’s more difficult to make money off your sale under 5 years. However, if you put a larger downpayment on your house, then your interest rate and mortgage will probably be smaller, making it possible to make money in a shorter amount of time.
Building home equity is important. You’ll want to have a lot of
equity built up when you decide to sell. The amount of home equity you’ve obtained depends on any remodeling or renovations you’ve made, as well as your mortgage. If the home you bought was already in tip-top shape, then it may be difficult to build equity. If you’ve remodeled the kitchen, bathroom, redone the flooring, or made other renovations around the house, then you have most likely gained home equity. You can also increase your home equity by paying off more of the principal on your mortgage.
3. Market Conditions
One of the more common reasons you’re eager to sell your home
is to make money on your property. There are a few things to look
out for when deciding if it’s a seller's market and whether or not
it's time to make your move. If you notice the price per square foot
in your area is increasing, chances are that homes stay on the
market for a shorter time. You should also take note of homes
near you that are selling. It might seem time-consuming, but don't
worry! We always keep track of recent home sales in the area and
can send you over an up-to-date market report.
There is a form at the bottom of this post you can fill out and I'll send you over an market report. It won't be 100% accurate but will give you a good idea of where you stand. If you want to dig deeper after receiving it, I'll be happy to come out and talk with you but without seeing your home, this will be as close as I can get.
4. You're Out Of Space
Maybe this was the first house you bought when you were
expecting your first child and there were only three of you, but
now with three kids and two dogs, there isn't much space.
Although it may be sad to move out of the home where you
started your family, the happiness of your family may be greater
than the cost of selling your home and buying a new one.
Other life situations like divorce, illness, or even the need to
downsize may also lead you to sell sooner than you originally
5. Capital Gains Tax
If you don’t qualify to avoid paying capital gains taxes on the sale
of your home, you may not want to sell your home yet. To avoid capital gains taxes, you should make an effort to stay in your home for at least two to five years. Making a sale before two years could be a huge mistake, and could ultimately leave you without much equity, especially if you have to pay capitalgains tax.
6. Closing Costs
Closing costs are often overlooked but play an important part
when it comes to selling your home. On average, real estate agents have a commission rate of 6% when you sell your home. You are also likely to pay a closing cost when buying a home, which can be between 3%-6% of the purchase price of the home. Keeping closing costs in mind before you sell allows you to budget this into your expenses and avoid surprises when it comes to closing.
So, Is It Time To Sell?
If you've already taken these factors into
consideration and decided that it's time to sell, take
the first step and get your home's value. If not, no
worries! We're here for you when you're ready. :)